Ibrox manager Steven Gerrard claims Livingston come very close to the line between a physical approach and serious foul play, and in some cases cross it, after Joe Aribo was left with a gaping head wound following Ricki Lamie’s aerial challenge in the first half.
Gerrard repeated this contention yesterday while providing the latest health update on Aribo, who he said could be missing for “a few weeks”.
Livingston, meanwhile, are looking to return to winning ways against Hamilton Accies tomorrow to maintain their top-six place after the disappointment of that narrow loss to Rangers.
Dykes argues that Livingston’s approach is suiting them so why should they change?
“I do not care what people think,” he said. “We just do what we are good at and try to get results.
“You do not want to make it easy for teams. When they come up against us they need to know it is going to be a battle. But I think we have a lot of quality in the team as well. When we go forward we do play. We have surprised a lot of people this season. It is just the start, we can improve. It is one of those things where we work hard and fight together and we go and win games.” Regarding the incident itself, he added: “I didn’t really see it. I saw the blood coming out so obviously he [Lamie] did connect. He was looking at the ball and connected with him. But it is one of those things in football. It is a physical game. He does not mean to go in and elbow him so I think it is a yellow. Luckily enough it was not a serious injury, so it was one of those things.”
Dykes himself had cause for complaint after he was upended shortly before half-time in a challenge from Filip Helander. The Australian striker was straight through on goal and he later revealed referee Don Robertson apologised to him as they went off for half-time and admitted it should have been a red card for the Rangers defender.
“Personally I thought it was a red card,” he said. “I thought I nicked the ball out of his ankles. The ref told me at half-time it was a red. It’s part of the game where refs get things wrong and you cannot do anything about it.
“You have to get on with it. We had chances after that, so it is not as if we lost because of that but it would have changed the game a lot. It is what happens in football.”